This new twist in tacos, with baked, not fried, tortilla shells, sure stacks up in flavor


November 04, 1992|By Rita Calvert | Rita Calvert,Contributing Writer

The American obsession with south-of-the-border flavors is booming and here to stay. There isn't a more effective way to gather enthusiastic eaters than with the familiar taco in an impressive, updated version. The baked flour tortillas are much lower in calories than the fried corn tortilla shells and to lower calories even more, use a light cheese and sour cream.

The directions call for baking the taco stack in the oven but if you are microwave friendly, the tortillas can be warmed in the microwave by placing on a plate and covering with microwave wrap. The whole taco stack can be covered loosely and heated in about 6-8 minutes.

The shredded lettuce of a typical taco goes into a salad with carrots. Grate the carrots and finely slice the lettuce while the taco stack bakes. Lime sherbet with toasted coconut topping completes the meal with a refreshing Mexican twist. Toast coconut in the already warm oven for about five minutes.

Items you should have in your pantry: tomatoes, carrots, lettuce, salad dressing, scallions, coconut, vegetable oil, cumin, sour cream.

Your 10-item-or-less shopping list: 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts; package 7-inch flour tortillas; 1 16-ounce jar salsa; 1 1/4 cup shredded Cheddar cheese; 1 ripe, medium avocado; lime sherbet

Chicken taco stack Serves 4.

4 7-inch flour tortillas

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin and salt to taste

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

2 medium fresh tomatoes, thinly sliced

2 large scallions, thinly sliced

1 1/4 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (or light cheese)

1 medium ripe avocado

16-ounce jar salsa

1 cup sour cream for topping

Wrap tortillas in foil and place in 375-degree oven for 10 minutes. Sprinkle chicken breasts with cumin and salt. Put oil in a medium skillet and heat on medium high until hot. Add chicken breasts and cook about 3 minutes a side until golden but not dry. Remove and cut into 1/4 -inch slices. Remove tortillas from oven.

Place one flour tortilla on a baking sheet. Top with a third of the chicken, a third of the scallions, a third of the tomato slices and a fourth of the cheese (you will need some cheese for the top.) Repeat layers ending with a flour tortilla. Cover with remaining cheese. Cover with foil being careful not to crush the top. Warm in oven 15 minutes. Meanwhile, peel, pit and thinly slice avocado lengthwise. Remove taco from oven and top with fanned slices of avocado. Slice into wedges and serve with salsa and sour cream on the side.


Chicken taco stack *

Shredded lettuce & carrot salad *

Lime sherbet sprinkled with toasted coconut

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